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March 23, 2004: 'A Happy Medium' - Pics & update
A Happy Medium - onstageA couple of fabulous onstage pictures from A Happy Medium.

The show, starring Su as Ellen Small, is already into its third week, which commences this evening at the Forum Theatre in Billingham.

Su is having a ball playing "psychic" Ellen and is thoroughly enjoying being on another tour of the UK, as you will be able to tell by these pictures. Reviews and audience reaction, even at this early stage, suggest this will be another very successful addition to Su's impressive theatre CV.

Further information and the complete UK tour dates can be found at SuOnline's dedicated A Happy Medium section. Please click the pictures to take a look.

March 23, 2004: 'Newcastle Evening Gazette' - Su is a medium rare talent
Newcastle Evening Gazette - 19th March 04Su was interviewed, about A Happy Medium, last week by the 'Newcastle Evening Gazette'. The article was published in the newspaper and online at the 'IC Newcastle' and 'IC Teeside' websites.

Su is a medium rare talent 

Su Pollard roared through Billingham only a few months ago as the fiercest Miss Hannigan ever to terrorise Annie and the other little musical orphans.

Her performance helped make sure the show had a near sell-out run. Now she is back at the Forum Theatre from Tuesday, crystal ball gazing as the optimistic central character in the very new comedy, A Happy Medium.

It is set among the hereafter world of spirits and this is troubling the friendly, boisterous, talkative Su. "I wonder if they have tea bags in the hereafter. I hope they do, I love tea. I have had six cups already and I'm going to have another soon."

As we are talking at 10.30 in the morning, this is quite an intake but Su has never been one for happy mediums.

She is excited by the newly opened production. "It's visually funny, looks good and has wonderful effects.

"It's not Shakespeare, it's straight in your face fun but there's nothing in it that people would consider offensive and it's only two hours long so the audience won't be fidgeting."

Su plays Ellen Small, a woman with big ideas who wants to make contact with her dead sister. "Ellen used to be a cabaret singer and sings a lot. At the end of act one, she thinks she has been given a gift. She thinks she is going to be the world's first singing medium."

She hopes it will not offend spiritualists as writers Dorthy Paul and John Bett spent a lot of time talking to them to get the terminology right. Does she believe in the afterlife herself?

"I would really, really like to and everyone wants to speak to their dead grandad. I don't think there's any evidence but it would be really good fun.

"Think of the people you would meet - where would you put them all? Imagine seeing someone who was always ill and thinking 'I'll have to ask her how she is again'."

Ellen is far removed from Miss Hannigan but Su likes it like that. And what a Miss Hannigan.

"When I was last in Billingham I think I was in Iceland and someone said 'My Clarissa was scared of you.' I saw her in the street later and I think she was more reassured by then. I gave her 5p to buy a lollipop.

"It's nice to do a varying range of parts and I think there's always part of yourself in all of them."

She first caught the eye on Teesside in an early Cameron Mackintosh production of Godspell. This famously led to a food fight with the producer. He threw cakes at her shouting "These are yours." She responded "They're fairy cakes, they must be yours."

"He has forgiven me now and we laugh about it but I came off worse," she points out. "He threw one down my party frock and I was covered in cream and coffee."

She sang Turn Back O Man in the show and Sir Cameron, now the world's leading theatrical producer, asked her to perform it again on the special tribute album made to salute his career.

"He asked all the individuals who had sung in his musicals to do their version so I was more than happy to do it. It was a great compliment."

Away from the stage she has just got involved with one campaign, and may soon be starting another. Firstly, she is anxious to warn people about heart problems that could kill them.

"I don't want to be judgmental because if it's hereditary and if it's in your family, there's nothing you can do about it. But heart disease and heart attacks have affected my friends and family in the past and that's given me a shock into realising how little we care for our hearts.

"It's made me realise that it's so important to stay healthy and make sure you can enjoy your life to the full. The way I look at it, you need to have everything in moderation. It can be so easy to drink, smoke and eat too much. But if you stop and think more often then you'll be helping yourself."

Her other campaign is slightly less serious. "I'm going to campaign to get better hotels. They must be clean, warm in winter, and more geared to women. I want more female attendants - and hair driers that dry more than one strand of hair at a time."

By Keith Newton, Evening Gazette.

March 23, 2004: 'Hi-De-Hi!' - BBC Comedy Connections
The 'Hi-De-Hi!' castInteresting news for all Hi-De-Hi! fans...

The BBC is making a new series of 'Comedy Connections', interviewing the production staff and actors of some of Britain's most popular sitcoms. One of the episodes of the new series will be devoted to Hi-De-Hi!, and behind-the-scenes anecdotes about the Maplin's mob should feature aplenty! The series is currently in production.

More info and broadcast details as and when they become available.

Thanks, as always, to the wonderful Carolyn Bartholomew at the BBC.

March 14, 2004: 'Lincolnshire Echo' - Su Interview
Su was recently interviewed by the 'Lincolnshire Echo':


Caring for your heart and making a will are two issues that affect every aspect of society. From children to elderly people, from office workers to celebrities, good health is something that should always be valued. As actress and singer SU POLLARD explains, taking care of yourself is a task that should never be taken lightly..... 

HEART disease and heart attacks have affected my friends and family in the past and that's given me a shock into realising how little we care for our hearts.

It's made me realise that it is so important to stay healthy and make sure you can enjoy your life to the full.

I think one of the things very few people realise is how heart disease can affect as many women as men. Women think that it is always cancer that affects them, but heart disease is another one to look out for.

Your heart is something inside that you cannot see. So it's important to make sure you take care of it.

It's not like your skin - you can see if that's sore or cut - but your heart suffers silently, and when it does become ill the results can be terrible.

I am just a great believer in making people aware of themselves and of keeping fit and healthy.

And to make sure you care for your heart you definitely need some awareness of how it works and what will work for you.

It's not something to be taken lightly - every single person needs to ensure that they care for themselves and to look out for others around them.

I see supporting campaigns such as this as my way of supporting others - letting them know how important it is to care for themselves and live a fit, healthy and fun life.

The way I look at it, you need to have everything in moderation. It can be so easy to drink, smoke and eat too much. But if you stop and think more often then you will be helping yourself.

My friend Terry is a great example. He had a heart attack a few years ago at the age of 48.

That frightened both him and me no end, but it did shock him into leading a better lifestyle. He was lucky that he survived the attack and can tell the tale and improve his eating and exercise, but you have to remember that some people are not so lucky.

Something like Terry's heart attack really makes you start thinking about things.

Later on he then found out that there was a history of heart conditions in his family - apparently that's something you need to look out for - and his mum has since had a triple heart bypass.

I think that educating people about healthy lifestyles should start early though. There is no point in letting children be unhealthy because things like heart disease build up over the years and just get worse and worse.

A lot of children of school age probably have parents who suffer from heart problems or ill health and so they know all about what it involves, but in practice these things just don't work the same way.

The long and short of it is the fact that everyone wants a fabulous life and we want to help people to do that.

Talking about hearts, wills and keeping healthy is not all gloom and doom - I wouldn't want people to think that.

It's just about making yourself happier and healthier.

Who doesn't want to be fit and fabulous?

I think as a child I was really helped out by Hilda, my mum, because she was very strict and only let me have about one sweet a week.

At the time I complained and thought she was being mean, but now I really thank her because it meant I never got a sweet tooth and it's made it easier for me to eat healthily.

What I do to make sure I've got a healthy heart is to give it a test every day. I've started skipping for 100 skips every day. It doesn't take long but it really gets you out of breath.

It's like they say - every little helps. And it does.

My sister is a nutritionist and I get a lot of my enthusiasm for health from her - she's taught me about heart health and I think it's worth knowing how very important it is.

I live in a three-storey house in London, so I also get plenty of exercise just walking around my home!

The reason I'm so keen to let people know that heart disease is such a killer and that it can be avoided is because I know quite how essential it is to stay healthy.

In some cases, for some people, it's actually a case of life and death.

You can have all of the money in the world but nothing can buy you health and a good life.

March 8, 2004: 'Hi-De-Hi!' - BBC Boxed Set special offer!
Hi-De-Hi! - Boxed Set 2Wakey wakey campers! 

On behalf of Joe Maplin, the BBC is pleased to offer visitors to Su-Online the opportunity to purchase discounted copies of our forthcoming video and DVD release of Hi-de-Hi directly from Maplin’s HQ.

Available from 5th April 2004 (issue date subject to change), the episodes being released in this instalment of Crimpton capers are as listed below.

For more information or to place a pre-release order, e-mail Yellowcoat Bartholomew at carolyn.bartholomew@bbc.co.uk (or simply click on the image).

Here at Maplin’s HQ, the word on the grapevine is that bands are OUT in 2004, so lap dancing will be introduced in the Hawaiian Ballroom. Yvonne and Barry Stuart-Hargreaves politely declined contract; in fact, Yvonne had a touch of the vapours - still running a feather under her nose as I type!


Yellowcoat Bartholomew (Entertainments), Maplin's Holiday Camp Head Office, AKA BBC TV Centre

March 8, 2004: 'Hi-De-Hi!' - Episodes on DVD/VHS set Two *exclusive*
SuOnline can exclusively reveal the episode contents of the second DVD boxed set:

Available from 5th April 2004 (issue date subject to change), the episodes being released in this instalment of Crimpton capers are as follows:

Nice People with Nice Manners 
Carnival Time 
A Matter of Conscience 
The Pay-Off 
Trouble and Strife 
Co-Respondent’s Course 
It’s a Blue World 
Eruptions (Christmas Special) 
The Society Entertainer 
Sing You Sinners 
Maplin Intercontinental 
All Change 

Many thanks to Carolyn Bartholomew at the BBC.

March 1, 2004: Su in 'A Happy Medium'
A Happy MediumSu opens later this month, Friday 12th March at the Connaught Theatre in Worthing, in A Happy Medium.

Su plays Ellen Small in the production, written by Dorothy Paul and John Bett.

Please click on the picture to visit SuOnline's new dedicated A Happy Medium section.

There you can find full details on tour dates, as well as contact information for each theatre the production will visit over the coming months.

February 24, 2004: Su's latest Web Letter
Su's Web LetterJust added to SuOnline - Su's latest Web Letter!

With updates on Annie, A Happy Medium, her "one-man-show", future plans, plus how she has been spending her spare time, it's a terrific read.

Please click on the picture to read the full letter.

February 18, 2004: Su newsy bits & pieces!
Yours magazine - January 2004• Su was the subject of a "lookey-likey" letter in a January issue of 'Yours'' magazine. Thanks to Irene Moore for providing the clipping.

Double Take - I work in a residential home, The Poplars. Residents and staff get on brilliantly but one carer in particular puts a smile on all our faces - Ann Ringrose. Her nickname is 'Mother' as she takes everyone under her wing. She is a born comedian and I think she is the spitting image of Su Pollard. Do other readers agree? Carol Meager, Tealby, Lincs.

• Su is currently hard at work rehearsing for the opening of A Happy Medium. The show hits the road in early March. More info soon.

• Next month also sees the release of the second set of Hi-De-Hi! DVD's and Videos. More info on this release soon too.

• We will soon be publishing another Website Letter from Su. Stay tuned for a feast of news and gossip, from Su's own pen, in the not-too-distant future!

February 3, 2004: 'A Happy Medium' - Update
A Happy MediumSu will soon be touring the UK, once more, in A Happy Medium. Further information here, very soon.

Brian Hewitt Jones Presents A New Comedy By Dorothy Paul and John Bett Ellen Small (Su Pollard) is a woman with "big ideas". She wants to make contact with her dead sister, to fulfil a promise made years ago. Regardless of the feelings of her two daughters, she enlists the help of Mr Proudfoot, a part time medium. Their combined dabblings in the spirit world produce a series of hilarious events, unlock hidden powers and family secrets and ensure that no one escapes the "ghosts" from the past. Is Ellen psychic or mad, or both? Su Pollard brings to the part of Ellen, all the warmth, comedy and feeling for humanity that has made her one of the UK's favourite comedy actors.

January 14, 2004: 'Hi-De-Hi!' - A second boxed set?
Hi-De-Hi! - Boxed Set 2It's now looking likelier than ever that there will be a second boxed set of Hi-De-Hi! episodes.

Though still not officially confirmed by the BBC, various DVD websites and online stores (Amazon, Play, Black Star etc.) are now advertising the set as a forthcoming release.

And this image, featuring Su, as Peggy Ollerenshaw, on the cover, has become available.

As soon as this is confirmed as a genuine release we will let you know here.

Hi-De-Hi!: Series 3 & 4 (3 Discs)
Due for release on 8th March 2004
Every episode from series 3 and 4 of the classic TV comedy.
Duration: 7 hours approx.

January 14, 2004: 'Britain's Best Sitcom'
Hi-De-Hi! placed at a highly respectable number 40 in the BBC's 'Britain's Best Sitcom' laughterfest last Saturday evening. Another Su-related show, Gimme Gimme Gimme, placed at number 48 in the rundown.

Hi-De-Hi! creators, David Croft and Jimmy Perry, featured a number of times in the list, including in the Top Ten with Dad's Army, a favourite to win. 

Please visit: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sitcom/index.shtml if you would like to vote for Dad's Army, or any of the other fantastic shows.

Britain's Best Sitcom - 10 Finalists (in no particular order)

Fawlty Towers
Dad's Army
The Good Life
Only Fools And Horses
Open All Hours
The Vicar Of Dibley
One Foot In The Grave
Yes Minister

January 6, 2004: 'Snow White' over - Oh yes it is!
Su and Snow WhiteSu has now completed her panto for 2003's festive period, Snow White.

The Wicked Queen has left the building - the Hexagon Theatre in Reading, to be precise.

Highlights of the show included Su's spirited renditions of "Let Me Entertain You" and "Diamonds Are A Girls Best Friend".

SuOnline has already received messages saying how good Su was as the baddie. Thanks for those, and to everyone who caught Su's Christmas performances.

January 6, 2004: 'Daily Mail' - Dame For A Laugh
Daily Mail - 20th Dec 03Su was included in a large panto feature in the Christmas edition of the Daily Mail's 'WEEKEND' magazine on Saturday 20th December.

Whatever happened to your favourite TV stars? And what are they doing for Christmas? As Helen Renshaw discovered, this season they'll mostly be wearing big frocks and thigh-high boots in a panto near you.

The Wicked Queen in Snow White
Former secretary Su made her TV debut on Opportunity Knocks in 1974, where her rendition of I'm Just A Girl Who Can't Say No came second to a performing dog. Undeterred, she went on to perform in musicals before finding fame as the gormless Peggy Ollerenshaw in Hi-De-Hi! In the 15 years since the final episode of the BBC's hit comedy, Su, now 54, has appeared in two more TV series - You Rang, M'Lord? and Oh, Dr Beeching! But since the mid-1990's she has mainly worked on the stage.
She says: The only time it gets on my nerves that people still see me as Peggy is when they wait until I've passed them, then shout, 'Hi de hi' after me. Of course, I shout, 'Ho de ho' back, then think, 'Well, that's the voice gone for tonight's performance!' I try to do roles that combine comedy, drama and music, so panto is perfect. There's nothing more heart-warming than seeing children's faces light up when they experience the magic of pantomime. The production I'm in this year is traditional panto at its very best - I'm having a wicked time.

NB: This article also featured Ruth Madoc, who is playing the Fairy in Robin Hood And The Babes In The Wood, at the Festival Theatre in Malvern.

January 6, 2004: That Was The Week We Watched / Teletext
A short, but interesting, look at what the UK public was tuning into back in 1982. That Was The Week We Watched included Hi-De-Hi!, a huge ratings hit for the BBC back then.

Su was also interviewed on Channel 4 Teletext (page 302) over the festive season. Unfortunately we missed this. If anyone saved it and has a transcript, we would like to include it on SuOnline, so do please get in touch.

January 6, 2004: Britain's Best Sitcom
The Top 50, of this BBC poll, will be announced this week and then you'll have the opportunity to vote for your favourite sitcom from the final Top 10.

Britain's Best Sitcom : BBC2 - Saturday 10th January : 9.00pm

No doubt there will be clips from Hi-De-Hi!, as well as a number of other Perry and Croft shows.

January 6, 2004: 'The Western Mail' - Where are they now?

Though the pilot of the happy holiday camp was shown in 1980 the first series was broadcast on February 26, 1981.

The series which ran until 1988, made stars of Ruth Madoc, Su Pollard, Paul Shane, Jeffrey Holland and made yellow coats and holiday camps all the rage.

Cast members even took part in the Hi-De-Hi musical and Su Pollard and Paul Shane worked together after the show ended on You Rang, M'Lord? and Oh Doctor Beeching.

The show ended with Su Pollard's dizzy character finally being made a yellow coat and Madoc's Gladys marrying her dream man.

Filmed in the off-season the cast had to jump in swimming pools in freezing temperatures just to keep scriptwriters Jimmy Perry and David Croft happy.

Welsh-born Madoc is currently filming the Russell T Davies series Mine All Mine while Paul Shane is currently starring in Cinderella at Redhill.

By Claire Hill.
[ Tuesday 23rd December 2003 ]

January 4, 2004: HAPPY NEW YEAR from SuOnline
A Happy and prosperous 2004 to all website visitors.

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